Archive | October, 2013

Where The Heart Is

photo-7-1Are you connected to your home?  Would removing you from it remove you from your memories,  to what you have learned, to what you love not because of how it looks but because of what you have invested?  A wandering brother once said that he never felt like I did and he had lived in many houses because of his work.  To be a home it must be invested with the soul of one, with the emotions and with the love.

It should take two people to build a home and a family.   But in many cases, too many of late, it is but one.   It can be one of meagre surroundings.   It can be of any type, in any country, in any place.   But with the place should be invested the emotional growth and in recollection, should be one of acceptance.   If the place is simply a house,  a place to sleep in and a place to leave, we have a rootless society, with no connection either to themselves or to their place of origin.  And their origin means the place where they became aware of themselves and respected for their persons.

When a place is created that is secure in the minds of the children, when what is created is of love, then what is given is a freedom to fly and then to come back.   Not necessarily to the physical place but to the secure emotional place within that has given them a rooting.  Those with no penchant for traveling will in time realize that rooting is taken with them and is not lost.  But for those whose hearts are secured within the place they have given their best, have taken their responsibilities to the highest and best they could envision, these attributes give to the children and the adults a confidence that world events cannot shake.   It gives them a grounding where the earth itself becomes home and a love for it that never dims.

They will forever hear in their minds and hearts the voice who greeted the morning and was servant to the day.   This is where the heart rests.   They will feel their connection to their earth no matter where their home is.   They do not spend their lives looking for a place to call home because they were rooted when it was necessary by those who loved them.   They will find wherever they are that they are at home.  The earth will never be an alien place, a foreign place.

Where the heart is will always be home.


Look For Me

DSC_1206I live my life
in a dimension of no space,
in a dimension of no time
and in an era of no choice.
I skirt perimeters of knowledge,
inserting by intention an idea.

You are my intension
and my idea.
Are you proud?  Are you grateful
for the time and place of your insertion?

Do you enjoy
my choice of residences,
built with your labor,
your muscles and your dreams?
I allowed you this.

Do you gaze upon the cardinal
sky hopping the conduits
of electricity on your behalf?
He visits you with a minute of his grace,
eager for your affirmation,
of your acknowledgment of his beauty.
You grant him this.

Is the sky deep enough
to hoist the evergreens even higher,
growing even taller as you watch them?
I watch with you.
I monitor your responses with my intricate eye
registering on my heart.
Each emotion is slotted into a space
with your name.
I congratulate Me.

I wave to you
in each movement of air
feeding your eyes with pleasure.
In grace I bow to you.

I’ve built lives around you.
You marvel in the families
of squirrels chasing only tails,
of birds flying toward melodies,
of night chased only by the days.

Wondrous of Me?
It is.
What is more wondrous?

That you take the time to look for Me.


Jan.  1980 (from the new work of My God and Me)
Photo by Josh Hallissey


There Is A Place

DSC_1197When I posted on this blog a letter I had written to the Professor of Theology and Philosophy in 1991, I mentioned Robert Nozick’s book called The Examined Life (published in 1989) and the possibility that we might be in the creation business as apprentices.  I recalled a conversation I had with our son David  who was a lawyer with a Philosophy major who also spoke of creating worlds which was new to me.   That took place long before David’s death in 1985.   Recently I found this poem written in 1988.


There Is A Place

There is a place and time
hanging to the east of conscience,
lolling in the fullness of space
that I watch and hunger for.
It thrives on my thought
being a world I created and rolled into Being.
It belies my judgment, proving itself real.

I’ve worked till dark and used the moon
to guide the plow through memories
meshed in tangled emotions.
I’ve cleared the land allowing new growth
to firmly root and be nurtured
by sun held too long beneath
grey clouds, heavy.

I did not know to do it
except my need to begin.   Anywhere.
And anywhere was a lot of places.
I was a good place to begin
so I began to plow,
through memories giving rise to emotions,
giving rise to pain.   Again.

To have left them buried beneath
a facade of civility was courting
volcanic eruption in babies still to be born.
I knew that but didn’t know I knew it.
I plowed till dark and through the night
and by the light of the half moon
plowed some more.
The night grew weary of me.

And now I sleep.   The babies play
and in their play create worlds again
on firm ground, growing grass without weeds,
digging foundations in loam
and not building mountains on garbage.
I’ve given them what I knew to be best
of what I am.  No need for them to fulfill
my dreams for I’ve dreamed them

and the new world waits.


February 4, 1988


Hopes and Desires

DSC_1148Those of us who have hopes, hold tightly to them.  I have found  during this life that there is insufficient time to enclose them all.  There is not enough time to focus on them as well as our commitments.  And we don’t know this up between the eyes at the time we make our first commitment.   Because we are honorable peoples, we stay the route and run out of time which takes us with it.   The commitments we go into, with part of us still wishing hopes fulfilled,  take energy into their cause.   So the girl who wished to write teaches her children and they become fine writers.   And she who created in the kitchen for her brothers teaches her children how to create with their hands, with their minds,  in the pleasure of the fields in all weather.  She teaches the glory of creation with reverence.  We learn what we can do with what we have and are richer for it.

We watch our children make commitments with their desires running alongside, to find that they must shelve portions of them we term dreams (because they are not yet physical) and tend to the needs of commitments.   And then we wish that each generation will be aware of consequences when decisions are made that prevent desire’s fulfillment.   Failure?  Giving up?   No,  just reality doing a check.  Humans must be a priority, especially when we make them.   What values would have gone into a dream are instilled instead, in commitments.  We learn early that our hearts teach us in ways the world cannot.

And the dreams of value,  either genetically impregnated or morally ensconced,will have their day either here or elsewhere.   And the dream being of noble quality demands a someone of noble quality to carry it.   If the progeny carry their commitments with honor, their dreams will be carried by a someone with honor.   Our hopes, if passed to one with memory who cherishes these, will be fulfilled.  And we will be the person of quality who dreamed the desire into being.  When we have worked the dailyness,  laid the groundwork,   done the footwork, and have ploughed the field to make it ready to work, the hope will be a reality.

All of Life is carefully balanced.

Photo by John Hallissey



IMAG0449 - second cropancient pieces
float to mind
presenting  impulses
prompting the pilgrim
to look toward home

time chastens
the victor
and yields the victory
to her who supposes
life everlasting

she has won the medal
and still covets awards
to hang on the wall

but they all hang on her heart.

photo by Joshua Hallissey


A Holiday Offering

Kiss The Moon Book Cover


ExhibitionTo  those readers of my blog who have mentioned how much they’ve appreciated my poetry and writing,  I have decided to offer my two books,  Kiss The Moon and The Last Bird Sings for $3o.00,  shipping included for the holidays.  These will of course be addressed to the recipient and signed.  We are currently in the second printing of Kiss The Moon and the first for The Last Bird Sings.  I do accept checks as well as PayPal.   Contact me here at my blog and I will get your message and set aside your books.  We have just a limited number of books so if you are making out your holiday lists or looking to take a hostess gift for any of your holiday dinners,  look here first and get a special kind of gift.   Remember for a signed copy of Kiss The Moon and The Last Bird Sings together,  both books for $30.00, order soon.   I will be looking to hear from you.


My God And Me

DSC_1146Be Still . . . . . . . . .

Be still, this too shall pass
and let me tell you why.

The blue waters you take for granted
may dry up…….
and the grass beneath your feet
will crunch like
your breakfast cereal.

You may not live to see
another snowfall you have grown to love.
You may not see your sensate world
covering its sins
with the damask cloth
used on holy occasions.
But this too shall pass.

The faces of your private world
you have grown to cherish
will disappear from view.
You will miss their nearness
and will go looking to fill
the void they leave.

But I tell you,  this too shall pass.

For when you realize that I
would take nothing from you
without giving something back,
I know you have learned your lesson well.

In its place will be
a knowing that in another world
what you have earned
can never pass away.

That is my gift to you.


(2012)   (My God And Me . . . a book in progress)
photo by John Hallissey


The Mills Grind Slowly

Dear Dr. . . . .

I presume it is Dr. though I did not see the title,  I feel it is richly deserved.  If you would please excuse me for not offering my gratitude for your perusal and comments on my work.  Life has a way of intervening and commitments cannot wait.

The work I refer to,  just to refresh memory,  was the poetry and the essays that my friend. . . so kindly asked you to look at.   The material reviewed you said was challenging and intriguing and I thank you.  Challenging and intriguing nowadays is not the stuffs of the marketplace.  In fact,  what can be easily identified, especially the familiar, is what is marketable.  This is not to put the onus on people,  though it seems that to massage the brain into greater activity is not thought of as fun.   That is too bad.   To my thinking, the purpose of this physical life is to learn but from the observation of the majority,  its purpose is to entertain.   The gods,  I understand,  even hide the lessons in toys.

With the challenges of earning a living,  there is little energy left to try and change much of anything.  To inject new thought or old thought spoken in today’s language,  puts one on the defensive.  The old adage of ‘if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it’  seems to be what is propelling everyone.  Except things are broken, old ideas, old habits and a first rate intelligence is not required to see that the results are no longer sufficient.  Ideas and values must expand to fit the larger scope, not abandoned altogether.

Physical and mental boundaries are not finite.   We often speak disparagingly of primitive religions.  Simple observation tells us that as a technological society we have lost the spirituality that once united the simpler life with the cosmos.  And we are the loser.   We speak of life everlasting and yet are afraid to die.  We speak of the resurrection and buy cemetery plots so we will be remembered.  We send crossed signals.

When I wrote the essay, Concerning:  Creation 101 I wished to bring forth several ideas to show we are Creationists.  Individually and en masse we create the climate for what happens in our world.  I came upon a book by Robert Nozick called The Examined Life.   He wrote this while on sabbatical from Harvard and in it, to my surprise,  he announces that perhaps we are in the creation business and are discovering one way it can be done.   And he brings forth the idea that we are apprentices and perhaps will be in charge of something else, anon.

This again says that mental boundaries no longer exist.   There is a Spirit afoot that will speak and to ears and hearts that are open , they will hear.   There are those whose brains are open albeit a tiny percentage more than the average and to them will be given messages transformed  into ideas that will be grounded in this world.   To those whose eyes are open,  they will interpret the writings on the walls.

I realize that my ideas are not new ones but I try to speak in the vernacular.  All life is simultaneous.   When a philosopher like Robert Nozick comes up with creation apprenticeship, someone like me, or maybe many someones also pick up the idea at the same time.  Eden was Earth,  everywhere.   According to where one stood.   Maverick thinking?  Possibly but I think not.   My scope had to broaden to contain my commitments.

Thank you for your time and effort.   I did want to explain myself further.   Whether my lifetime will bear me out, I leave to the heavens.   They still hold the sparklers, contrary to what Man thinks.  I bless,

(I came across this copy of a letter to a Professor of Theology and Philosophy of a large university who was a friend of a friend.   It was in a journal entry of 1991.  The mills of the gods grind slowly.)


Through A Window, Gladly


Fairy Dust

Will the children find
how shaky all things are
and the gods who are their parents,
all illusion?
What will I say then?

“All of it, my dears,  all of it
is nothing but fairy dust
created by a head
in search of its own dream.”

Where would I be then?
In the midst of this day
or at the end of it, charged with life
pulsating within me.
Tired to be sure
but marveling that in spite,
despite everything,
life is sweet in any dimension.

I am  as real as these fingers
on this keyboard,  as real as
the smile that crossed my lips
when the computer commanded
“please wait”.
Or as real as the work I see surrounding me
that I may never get to.
I do what I see is mine to do.

I am committed as clearly
as I more nearly see.
I write as I more nearly think.   I think.
And I hear what is mine to hear.
So am I real?

Only to arms around me.
Only to those in whose memory I live and
will continue to live.
And as alive as I am in my progeny
whether here or elsewhere.
As I walk, I am.   As I think, I am.
And as I love, I am.
This is how real I am.

And if what I participate in,
including this,
is illusion, so be it.
I would hope it would be a life giving illusion.
In the face of no hope,

I would be hope.


On Growing Up And Growing Old

To know when one demeans one’s own value system, is to debase the Spirit within.   It is all a value system.   And a value system worth its salt will not be maligned in any manner, not even by systems beyond what one knows.  The value system of behavior based on high premises will be honored.   But the source of the system so designed must be investigated and must be researched.   You cannot adopt a belief system based on an others’  work.  It must be within the frame of reference of the individual who espouses the system.

At what point do we decide on a value system?   We can decide at any point whether we be patrons of the library  or of religious conviction.  Do we need a boundary or do we think that we are innately good and require no other to tell us when we do wrong?   It should always be a choice and understood will be the consequences.   When we decide on a value system we are pointedly within a system we have adopted and are living with it or by it.  We simply have not named it.   Is it necessary for us to name the system or are we happy simply to live it?  These kinds of questions we answer as we move from day to day.   It is the dailyness of living that prods us to abide by what we consider to be good or not.   The normal day to day living already comes with its own set of lesson plans.   The heavens note the bright thoughts that are moving within the Earth boundaries and here we are surprised when heaven’s thoughts match ours.   And it is then we shout revelation!  It is interesting as we march into our tomorrows we find that our steps lend themselves to our own adopted behavior.   We are already living our beliefs by our actions and our thinking.  And those who gravitate toward us are already responding to our belief system or our philosophy.   They say the apple does not fall far from the tree.   Here it can also be said that the friends of one’s walk in life are like us and if we find that there is a one who holds different ideas,  we are then free to either walk along or subtly dismiss the one from our circle.   What we do will be very telling about us.   Should we embrace the one whose thoughts differ we might find at first to be frightened.   If terror compounds our fright we will lose the friendship quickly but we might see, if we try to incorporate different ideas, that our boundaries move apart and our premises broaden in scope.

This is about growth.   It is about evolution and it is about being human.   Life is exciting and it is an adventure.   It is about growing up and growing old and wise and a leaning post for the young.   And it is about losing our focus on this world at the end of this life and focusing on a new one.   It is still about growth and evolution and about being other than human that our vocabulary has no words for.   But it will still be exciting and an adventure because life is sweet in any dimension.


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